The Nyoma Advanced Landing Ground (ALG) in Ladakh is busy with whirring helicopters

Even after the Indian and Chinese armies disengaged in eastern Ladakh on August 4-5, the Nyoma Advanced Landing Ground (ALG) remains busy with whirring helicopters and aircraft. India Today’s team visited the ALG to bring exclusive details on operational preparedness at the vital airbase.

The Nyoma ALG is strategically important as it is the airbase closest to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) between India and China in eastern Ladakh. The airbase enables quick movement of men and material in the area.

The Indian Air Force’s (IAF) Chinook and Apache helicopters are operating at the base non-stop to assist soldiers deployed at the China border, despite the withdrawal of both countries’ armies from friction points in the dispute that has been going on for more than a year.


Nyoma is home to the world’s highest Air Traffic Control system. It is used to monitor the movements on the other side of the border from an altitude of 14,000 feet.

The Indian Air Force is keeping a close watch along friction points at the LAC. In difficult conditions of the high mountains in Ladakh, the armed forces are prepared to deal with any eventuality.


At the ALG, India Today’s team witnessed Garud commandos of the IAF carrying out special operations while Apache, Chinook and Mi-17 fighter helicopters continuously patrolled the area. Soldiers and goods were being sent on planes to different areas of Ladakh. Mi-17V5 medium-lift helicopters are playing an active role in transporting materials and personnel.


Helicopters have been deployed in close proximity to the area where ground troops are operating in order to provide air support to the Indian Army personnel in the eastern Ladakh region.


The Chinook helicopter is a multi-mission helicopter. It is a two-rotor heavy-lift helicopter that has been used in multiple conflict zones across the globe. The first Chinook flew in 1962.

The Chinook that the IAF has bought is the CH-47F. It weighs 9.6 tonnes and is a heavy machinery, artillery and armoured vehicle.

These helicopters are performing the function of transporting soldiers to forward posts on the India-China border and delivering ration and weapons to them.


The 16-feet high and 18-feet wide Apache helicopter requires two pilots at all times. Two engines power it and it can travel at a speed of 280 km per hour.

The helicopter has been designed in a way that allows it to evade radar technology. It also has the capacity to release 16 anti-tank missiles. In the rifle mounted at the bottom of the helicopter, 1,200 bullets of 30 mm size can be loaded. The helicopter’s flying range is about 550 km and it can fly for three hours at a time.

The Apache helicopter is considered the best for mountain warfare.

The C-130J Super Hercules Special Operations aircraft is also flying at Nyoma advanced landing ground. In the coming days, fighter aircraft like Rafale and Sukhoi will also be seen flying from Nyoma ALG.